Art Gallery and Exhibitions

Current Exhibition

Inside the Permanent Collection:

Corita Kent

Everday Inspiration

September 8, 2020 - January 4, 2021

Known for her pop art style and her exciting combinations of text and image, Corita Kent (1918-1986) was a well-known figure in the art world. Corita's journey began when she entered the Immaculate Heart convent at 18. Corita earned her BA at Immaculate Heart College, where she later joined the faculty of the fine art department. She spent two decades teaching, creating, and sharing her passion for social issues before leaving the order in 1968. She eventually moved to the East Coast, settling in Boston, where she continued to create works for public and private commissions. Corita used her art to engage people in social causes until her death in 1986.

Corita's work drew on her lived experience but also incorporated the "everyday art" she saw around her. She was inspired by everything from Bible verses to literature, advertisements, to social causes. Her message was bright, intentional, and clear. The Molloy College permanent collection is fortunate to have several works by Corita that span different periods of her career.

Literature 

In 1965, Corita created a suite of eight serigraphs published with the essay "Words of Ugo Betti: Innocence and the Process of Justification in the Late Plays of Ugo Betti" by Sister Marie Fleurette. Betti was an Italian playwright whose work explored the nature of redemption. The work to believe in god, ispart of the series included with the essay. Corita returned to this quote later in life and created an entirely different representation in the work rules are fair, created circa 1973.

abstract print with script writing

Corita Kent, to believe in god, serigraph 1965. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immaculate Heart Community/ Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Text transcription:  to believe in god is to know that all the rules will be fair and that there will be wonderful surprises ugo betti

abstract print with script writing

Corita Kent, rules are fair, serigraph 1965. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immaculate Heart Community/ Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Text transcription: to believe in god is to know that all the rules are fair and that there will be wonderful surprises ugo betti

Religion

Corita spent much of her life as a nun with the Order of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and religious subjects were featured often in her work. The incorporation of textual elements with artistic representations of biblical passages was not uncommon. a great tree, which references the Parable of the Mustard Seed, and parable of the sower are examples of this.

abstract tree with calligraphy

Corita Kent, a great tree,serigraph, 1958. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immaculate Heart Community/ Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Text transcription: It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man has taken and planted in his garden where it has grown into a great tree from down and small the roots hold brown and greatness rises up Alleluia all decked with birds and emerald fringe the giant sings a seed no more

rocky field with sun in distance

Corita Kent, parable of the sower, serigraph, 1958. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immacualte Heart Community/Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARC), New York

It is no surprise that Corita, who found joy in the everyday, created prints based on parables that reflect the growth of God's kingdom from humble beginnings. The works spring and then feathers all , explore color and pattern in combination with calligraphy, presenting prayers of gratitude and extolling the beauty and joy of God.

abstract patterns of blue and pink with caligraphy

Corita Kent, spring,serigraph, 1960. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immaculate Heart Community/ Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Text transcription: i thank you God for most this amazing day: for the leaping greenly spirit of trees and a blue tone dream of sky: and for everything which is natural which is infinite which is yes

abstract birds and text

Corita Kent, then feathers all, serigraph, 1958. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immacualte Heart Community/Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARC), New York

Text transcription: then feathers all flown creatures hold peace their own and some intent in early air, at the angel's cry painting the sun what it never was before the letter invites come gather come at god's great feast

Commissions

Throughout Corita's career she took on many commissions, her most well-known for the U.S. Postal Service's love stamp series. Public commissions allowed her to combine art with everyday life, and spread her message of everyday art. In 1985, Corita designed a billboard which read: "We can create life without war." She wanted to put the phrase "before people's eyes every day, until eventually they realize they are part of that 'We.'" The serigraph we can create life without war, created in 1984, is an earlier iteration of this important theme. 

script text with flowers

Corita Kent, we can create life without war,serigraph, 1984. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immaculate Heart Community/ Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

abstract patterns of gold and purple with script

Corita Kent, Commissions (Brown for governor), serigraph, 1973. © 2020 Estate of Corita Kent/Immacualte Heart Community/Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARC), New York

Text transcription: [top] the test of leadership is the test of imagination, the test of creativity the ability to think ideas that have never been thought before. Edmund G. Brown, Jr. [down] we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream. Martin Luther King


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Calling Molloy Students!

Do you have an exhibition idea? Let us know! Each year we work with student clubs, individuals, groups, and course projects. Our team can help bring your exhibit ideas to life.  

Proposals

Are you interested in exhibiting with us? Please fill out this Proposal Form (PDF) and send it with your portfolio to artgallery@molloy.edu. Exhibition proposals are accepted and reviewed on an ongoing basis.  

Gallery Space

1st-floor Kellenberg Hall - Our primary gallery space is currently in the north rotunda on the first floor of the administration building. Providing approximately 90 linear feet of hanging space, with adjustable track lighting. It is a highly visible area on campus. It is reserved from mid-April through June for our annual BFA/BS Senior showcase.


2nd-floor Kellenberg Hall - Centrally located across from the James E. Tobin Library, this area offers approximately 60 linear feet with a hanging rail system and track lighting. Student and club exhibitions use this space.

About the Gallery

The Molloy Art Gallery provides a venue and support for student exhibitions. The gallery program also promotes and supports Long Island artists and Long Island arts organizations and has exhibited a variety of nationally and internationally renowned artists.  Art exhibition programming and gallery space have existed in various locations on campus since the late 1960s.